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Helen Mar Paddock Carrothers
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Birth: Aug. 27, 1843
Waukesha County
Wisconsin, USA
Death: Jul. 2, 1921
Dodge Center
Dodge County
Minnesota, USA

Helen was born in Wisconsin to parents Thomas and Laura Paddock, both natives of Vermont. She was named after heroine Lady Helen Mar from the historic novel 'The Scottish Chiefs' by Jane Porter, first published in 1810. The name carried through four generations of daughters beginning with Helen Mar Paddock: Helen Mar McNanney (1873-1912), Helen Mar Riddle (1898-1950), and Helen Mar Johnston (1929-2010). In Oct. 1856, when she was only 13 years old, Helen married James Carrothers, age 26. In 1857, following a move to Winona, MN, the couple moved to the southwest quarter of section 22 in Beaver Falls Township, Renville County, MN, six miles from the Lower Sioux Indian Agency, where Mr. Carrothers was employed as a carpenter. They were some of the first white residents of the area, known as the Beaver Creek settlement, and here their children Althea and Thomas were born; Helen was only 15 years old when she gave birth to Althea. Mr. Carrothers could be away from home for several days at a time, so Helen became acquainted with the Dakota Indians and learned their language. The medicine man taught her how to gather and use herbs to make medicine, and she would go with him to nurse the sick. By the summer of 1862, the number of white settlers in the area had grown, and their Dakota neighbors, angry with conditions at the reservation, turned hostile. On August 18, 1862, the first day of the Dakota uprising, Indians attacked the whites at the Lower Sioux Agency and at the settlements in the region, killing hundreds, and taking over one hundred, mostly women and children, as prisoners. When word of the uprising reached the Beaver Creek settlement, several residents gathered at the Jonathan Earle farm where they made plans to go (by teams and wagons) to Ft. Ridgely, some 16 miles to the east, for protection. They traveled just a short distance when they were surrounded by Indians who began shooting at them. Some in the group were killed, some escaped, and the rest, women and children, including Helen and her two children (her husband was away at the time), were captured. All were initially taken to Chief Little Crow's village. Helen and her children escaped from this camp, and, after eight days of terrific hardship, they reached Ft. Ridgely. In time, refugees at the fort were taken to St. Peter and then to St. Paul. In early September, Helen traveled to Wisconsin to stay with her parents. She was very weak from her recent experiences, and it would take many months for her strength and health to return. In April, Helen and James moved to St. Paul, where he worked as a pattern maker in a foundry, and she boarded the men who worked with him. They were there for just two months, and then moved to St. Peter. By this time, they were having marital difficulties. Many years later Helen would write, "After my capture by the Indians, there was discord between me and my husband, and at St. Peter we agreed to disagree." Following their divorce, he joined the cavalry in Wisconsin and went to the South, and she went to work for Joseph and Valencia Reynolds, owners of the Northwestern Hotel in St. Peter. She worked there for two years, then went to the home of her parents, who had moved from Wisconsin to Dodge County, MN. Here she met Dennis McNanney, a native of Ireland, and they were married in October 1869. They eventually had three children, Helen Mar, Arthur, and Moses. The couple moved to Brainerd, MN, were there for seven years, then moved to Bismarck, ND, and then to Montana. Mr. McNanney was involved in lumbering and railroad construction, and he died (1887) in Montana. After his death, Helen remained in the area and was hired to cook for employees of the Northern Pacific Railroad. Later, she left Montana and came to Minneapolis, working for a while as a dressmaker, and then operated a boarding house. After several years in Minneapolis, she moved west again, first to Portland, OR, and then to Tacoma, WA, where she kept another boarding house. During this time, she twice lost everything to fires. She finally returned to her old home in Dodge County, MN, and, in November 1896, married Lemon H. Tarble, a widower. They farmed land in sections 5, 6, and 8 in the northwest part of Ashland township, near Dodge Center, MN, until 1905, when they moved into town. Helen was the author of a book, published in 1904, giving the story of her capture and escape from the Indians. During this time, she lectured on the subject of the uprising, and, for a number of years during the state fair, she had charge of the old settlers building. Mr. Tarble died in 1918. Helen died on July 2, 1921, and was survived by a daughter, a son, and three grandchildren. Her obituary mentions that, in her last few years, she was tenderly cared for by her son, Arthur J. McNanney, and "everything was done for her that a loving heart and hands could do." Her funeral was held at the Methodist Church in Dodge Center.
Bill Cox
Family links: 
  Thomas J. Paddock (1809 - 1874)
  Laura Odell Paddock (1809 - 1873)
  Lemon Howard Tarble (1834 - 1918)
  Arthur J. McNanney (1872 - 1934)*
  Moses G. McNanney (1878 - 1908)*
  Lauren Austin Paddock (1837 - 1900)*
  Elbridge Gerry Paddock (1840 - 1920)*
  Helen Mar Paddock Tarble (1843 - 1921)*
  Helen Mar Paddock Carrothers (1843 - 1921)
  Louisa M Paddock Lynch (1848 - 1911)*
*Calculated relationship
Riverside Cemetery
Dodge Center
Dodge County
Minnesota, USA
Plot: Northeast section, Blk 1, Row 6, Lot 206
Created by: Bill Cox
Record added: Sep 01, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 57988111
Helen Mar <i>Paddock</i> Carrothers
Added by: Bill Cox
Helen Mar <i>Paddock</i> Carrothers
Added by: Bill Cox
Helen Mar <i>Paddock</i> Carrothers
Added by: Bill Cox
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